2022-04-28 Satipatthana (65) Fourth Noble Truth
7:30AM Apr 29, 2022
fourth noble truth
second noble truth
So, today's topic is the fourth noble truth. And how we understand that depends a little bit about how we understand the second noble truth. If the second noble truth is the cause of suffering, then we may or may not be able to let go the suffering but we understand the cause. And knowing that, maybe some detachment is the cause some clinging is the cause and belief that's unhealthy as a cause. Then we look for a practice that helps us to become free of that to loosen the grip. And so the fourth Noble Truth is the practice to do that. And so we started cultivating a way of being in the world, that creates the conditions for us to let go of the cause. And so we practice, right view, we practice, ethical life, we practice meditation practice, so that we can attain a experience or attain the degree of subtleness, the degree of non agitation, the degree of integrity, that allows us to, or the system, our mind our hearts to begin to soften and release the attachments we have, if we know the cause of suffering, and craving or attachment, and we have a very clear release of that craving a cessation of it, that's dramatic, then we know Oh, this is the way forward. And, and so, if the foreign eightfold path can be this is the way to do this again, this is the way to develop myself and grow myself so that these are the practices so that I put myself in a better position to let go even more and not clinging again. If the second noble truth is the arising of suffering, and the fourth is the cessation of suffering, we see it coming and going all the different shapes and forms of suffering that we have of stress we have and, and we see that in the arising and passing, there starts to be freedom, then, then the eightfold path can be seen as a path you can do this more and more support that deep seeing. But if the cessation the third noble truth is a definitive clear dropping away, the bottom drops away in some wonderful inspiring way. And then we realize, oh, this is freedom. This is peace. This is the profound sense of well being that's possible, I had no idea. Then the Eightfold Path, is that still the practice to it becomes a practice to two things to move into this experience of peace more and more. But it also becomes a practice that manifests that peace. And in the teachings of the Buddha, we find plenty of times where the eightfold path or eight ways of being in the world, which are not practices to attain peace, they're not practices that now we understand this is the what we should practice if we want to deepen and deepen our peace, but they're more expressions of the piece. So I don't know this is a good example, but the an open hand might feel easeful and the expression of the open has had his ease expression of open hand is being opened. The expression of open hand is being its sensitivity available to the world.
The expression of the open hand is it doesn't is not creating a fist to hit someone, it just an open hand. So when the letting go is deep, full enough and we have it becomes it can become a reference point and a source from which we then live our life and the Eightfold Path and is not a prescription for how to practice further so we can deepen our practice or to experience more liberation, but rather the Eightfold Path is an expression is a description of how we start living. So if if so expression, how are they so at some point, we have a clear sense that it's really good to be at ease, to be at peace, to be have a sense of well being. And then when we have forces within us, that want to go in a different direction, we would say why, why give up something good. Something useful for something is not so good. And it's not a matter of practicing the eightfold path. But rather, it's a matter of not doing those things that take us away from the Eightfold Path. Someone who is deeply practice becomes the Eightfold Path, they don't practice the Eightfold Path, and then becoming it, they don't do the things they don't allow themselves to do things that that take that away or they lose touch with themselves this home of who they are. And so, at some point in this Four Noble Truths practice, the eightfold path becomes more and more interesting. Either it becomes we understand that this is useful to do this, all eight of these practices, to create the conditions to involve the truth to move into a kind of transform who I am, transformed my feelings, my my sense of being my attitude, how I am in the world. So it becomes easier to let go more and more. Or there has been a transformation from a deep letting go. And now it's a matter of growing that transformation, letting it become spread and become bigger and bigger. And, and the Eightfold Path is then both the goal the fulfillment of the goal. And means to the goal. So the eightfold path are eight sets of ways of being. Sometimes they're called eight practices, which is true when they're understood to be a means to liberation. But they're but they're eight ways of being when they're understood as being an expression of our awakening. So these are right view, right resolve, right? speech, right action, right livelihood, right? effort, right mindfulness, and right concentration. And the right concentration ends with the right concentration. And right concentration is. So the middle ones, right speech, right action and right livelihood, their ethical, how we behave in the world, and how we relate to other people, how our actions affect others. And there's kind of an orientation to an ethical transformation, not to follow rules so much. But to follow these guidelines is these other ways of being that are the ethical guidelines, so that we begin to be transformed. It's not about following rules. Only it's about living this way. So that we start being ethically transformed, we become someone who has such a sense of integrity or peace, that of course, we wouldn't do the unethical things that would obscure that or harm that.
But with the right concentration, we're talking also about a transformation. Concentration is not just a matter of having a laser not just a laser focus of the mind. It's having a unified sense of peace and calm from having let go a lot and practicing concentration, practicing stability and steadiness. And this is one of the primary ways that the tradition Buddha's tradition has for preparing ourselves for the deepest kinds of letting go we can do. We're kind of becoming softer, more malleable, more resilient, more, less distractible. And in that state, it's kind of like we're ready for just something to be put down that we've been carrying for a long time. So there's some kind of inner transformation that happens And part of that inner transformation is an experience of peace. And, and at some point that peace becomes a reference point becomes a seed, that we can water and grow, become something that a plant that kind of grows and blossoms within us. And, and the Eightfold Path is the represents that blossoming, that fulfillment of it all. So if you are not familiar with the Eightfold Path, they're really marvelous things to learn and study. They, once you kind of get the idea, study them enough, so you understand the basic idea of what it is, each of them, then once you understand, then you can start feeling your way sensing your way understanding how these eight these eight waves are being, are not only practices, they're also inner wellsprings, of being at home ill inner expressions, of being settled in peace with oneself. And this piece is not doesn't doesn't start off doesn't have to be dramatic. But there might be little hints of what that is like. And then, as we orient around that peace, it can grow. There can it's possible to have very small degrees of peace in this life that we overlook. The mind is so concerned with his preoccupations that, we just keep thinking them. And we have one preoccupation finished and we just have to jump on to the next one and the next one and, and there's no space. What we learn in this practice, is to create a little more space and attentiveness to the subtler places of well being subtle places of peace, that begin surfacing through the practice. And then touch into it periodically regularly through the day. Find that little seeds and recognize it, water it with attention. Let it be a reference point, let it be a guide. Let it be kind of there to support you as you go through your life. So for this day, you might study they get a book or something or going online and read about the eight Noble Eightfold Path. But you also might look for the seeds of peace, the little hints of it that were ease or that you that might be more part of you more available than you allow yourself to feel this pause, stop take a break. Check into yourself see if you can find is there anywhere within you some modicum some some even a smallest degree of peace and well being. And if you stay close to that for a little while, breathe with it. What happens to you? And what do you learn about peace being an expression and not a practice. So thank you for today and we'll have one more talk on the Four Noble Truths tomorrow. And and we're almost done with the sati Putana SUTA. Thank you